Last weekend we braved the traffic and the crowds for a little bargin hunting at Union Square.
Parking was hell as expected and serendipity led us to a parking lot at Minna alley right next
to Anchor & Hope. Having heard good things about this restaurant, we decided to try our
luck there after our shopping without having any reservations. The place was almost full around 7 pm but the hostess was kind enough to squeeze us in for a table although she warned us that she would need the table for a reservation later.
We were starving after a full afternoon of shopping and ordered 3 appetizers - fries with
eyes (deep fried Smelts with Remoulade Sauce) , Clams in curry sauce, and the Calamari,
as well as a side of ribbon fries. I have never been a fan of little fish served whole with
bones but the Smelts were so tender and the batter was so crispy and light that i found
myself going for a few more. The Calamari was the best of the bunch - they were so tender that
my two year old who never eats chewy food ate half a plate. The clams were a bit disappointing - the curry sauce was IMO lacking in balance and I liked a similar dish at Fog City Diner much better.
The highlight of the night was the "fish and chips" main course. I have had too many "fish
and chips" in my life, was this was a revelation on what this could be when done perfectly
right. It was by far the best fish and chips I've had in my life - the cod was so tender and flaky
it reminded me of seabass in texture and richness. The batter was very thin and crispy yet it stayed on the fish when cut. The missus was not in the mood for seafood that night and
she ordered the braised short ribs which was very well executed but not spectacular. She
mentioned she'd stay with the seafood side of the menu next time. The wines were reasonably priced and the bottle of dry Riesling went superbly with the dishes. Service was friendly and casual and the waitress was very attentive.
Overall, we had a wonderful dining experience and will go back there in a heart beat.